Social Media Policy (2015)

1     Policy statement

1.1 This policy is intended to help members of Southampton Triathlon Club make appropriate decisions about the use of social media such as blogs, wikis, social networking websites, podcasts, forums, message boards, or comments on web-articles, such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn.

1.2 This policy outlines the standards we require members to observe when using social media, the circumstances in which we will monitor your use of social media and the action we will take in respect of breaches of this policy.

1.3 This policy supplements our Club Constitution and Complaints Policy that can be found on the club website:

1.4 This policy may be amended at any time.

2     Who is covered by the policy

2.1 This policy covers all members of Southampton Triathlon Club including all elected members of the club Committee and all coaching staff.

3     The scope of the policy

3.1 All members are expected to comply with this policy at all times to protect the interests of our club.

3.2 Breach of this policy may be dealt with under our the terms set out in our Club Constitution and Complaints Policy, and in serious cases, may be lead to dismissal from the club.

4    Responsibility for implementation of the policy

4.1 The Southampton Triathlon Club Committee (hereby referred to as the Committee) has overall responsibility for the effective operation of this policy.

4.2 The Committee is responsible for monitoring and reviewing the operation of this policy and making recommendations for changes.

4.3 All members are responsible for their own compliance with this policy and for ensuring that it is consistently applied. All members should ensure that they take the time to read and understand it. Any breach of this policy should be reported to the Committee.

4.4 Questions regarding the content or application of this policy should be directed to the Committee.


5     Using social media sites in our name

5.1 Only members are permitted to post material on a social media website in our name and on our behalf. Any breach of this restriction should be reported to the Committee.

6     Using club related social media

6.1 We recognise the importance of the internet in shaping public thinking about our club and its members.

6.2 We also recognise the importance of our members joining in and helping shape conversation and direction through interaction in social media.

6.3 Applications to join the club’s own social media shall be made to the Committee

6.4 The club reserves the right to refuse entry to the club’s own social media pages to members only.

7     Rules for use of the club’s own social media:

7.1 These rules will apply to:

7.1.1     Any person posting on the Club's own social media sites;

7.1.2     Any person posting on any social media site in the name of, on behalf of, or as a stated member of Southampton Triathlon Club.

7.1.3     Any person posting on any social media site any pictures of authors wearing Club kit, or uploading any images containing Club kit.

7.2 Whenever you use the club’s own social media in accordance with this policy, you must adhere to the following general rules:

7.2.1     Do not upload, post, forward or post a link to any abusive, obscene, discriminatory, harassing, derogatory or defamatory content.

7.2.2     Any member who feels that they have been harassed or bullied, or are offended by material posted or uploaded by another member on a social media website should inform the Committee.

7.2.3     Do not upload, post or forward any content belonging to a third party unless there is no reasonable doubt that it is appropriate to club activity. If in any doubt, consult the Committee before proceeding.

7.2.4     Before you include a link to a third party website, check that any terms and conditions of that website permit you to link to it. All links must be done so that it is clear to the user that they have moved to the third party's website.

7.2.5     When making use of any social media platform, you must read and comply with its terms of use.

7.2.6     Do not post, upload, forward or post a link to chain mail, junk mail or gossip.

7.2.7     Be honest and open, but be mindful of the impact your contribution might make to people’s perceptions of us as a club. If you make a mistake in a contribution, be prompt in admitting and correcting it.

7.2.8     You are personally responsible for content you publish into social media tools – be aware that what you publish will be public for many years.

7.2.9     Don't escalate heated discussions, try to be conciliatory, respectful and quote facts to lower the temperature and correct misrepresentations. Never contribute to a discussion if you are angry or upset, return to it later when you can contribute in a calm and rational manner.

7.2.10 If you feel even slightly uneasy about something you are about to publish, then you shouldn’t do it. . If in any doubt, consult the Committee before proceeding.

7.2.11 Always consider others’ privacy and avoid discussing topics that may be inflammatory e.g. politics and religion.

7.2.12 Avoid publishing your contact details where they can be accessed and used widely by people you did not intend to see them, and never publish anyone else's contact details.

7.2.13 Before your first contribution on any social media site, observe the activity on the site for a while before launching in yourself to get a feel for the style of contributions, the nature of the content and any ‘unwritten’ rules that other contributors might follow.

7.2.14 If you notice any content posted on social media about us (whether complementary or critical) please report it to the Committee.

8    Monitoring use of social media websites

8.1 Members should be aware that any use of social media websites may be monitored and, where breaches of this policy are found, action may be taken under our Club Constitution and Complaints Policy.

8.2 Misuse of social media websites can, in certain circumstances, constitute a criminal offence or otherwise give rise to legal liability against you and us. It may also cause embarrassment to us and to our members.

8.3 In particular uploading, posting forwarding or posting a link to any of the following types of material on a social media website, whether in a professional or personal capacity, will amount to gross misconduct (this list is not exhaustive):

8.3.1     pornographic material (that is, writing, pictures, films and video clips of a sexually explicit or arousing nature);

8.3.2     false and defamatory statement about any person or organisation;

8.3.3     material which is offensive, obscene, criminal discriminatory, derogatory or may cause embarrassment to us, our clients or our staff;

8.3.4     confidential information about us or any of our staff or clients (which you do not have express authority to disseminate);

8.3.5     any other statement which is likely to create any liability (whether criminal or civil, and whether for you or us); or

8.3.6     material in breach of copyright or other intellectual property rights, or which invades the privacy of any person. Any such action will be addressed under the [refer to your Disciplinary Procedure] and is likely to result in summary dismissal.

8.4 Where evidence of misuse is found we may undertake a more detailed investigation in accordance with our Club Constitution and Complaints Policy. If necessary such information may be handed to the police in connection with a criminal investigation.

8.5 If you notice any use of social media by other members in breach of this policy please report it to the Committee


9     Monitoring and review of this policy

9.1 The Committee shall be responsible for reviewing this policy annually to ensure that it meets legal requirements and reflects best practice.